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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has described his team’s performance in the turgid 0-0 draw with neighbours Manchester City as the best since he took over as manager.
Manchester United earned a point at Old Trafford from a game that left plenty to the imagination. It finished goalless and was frustrating for United, who had aspirations of inflicting a third straight derby defeat on Pep Guardiola’s side.
Quoted by the Manchester Evening News, however, he described the display as ‘the best’ since he took the reins – even better than January’s 1-0 win on enemy territory.
When asked to expand on his eyebrow-raising claims, he said: “I think last year at the Etihad we could have blown them away from the 10th to the 25th minute, we could have scored four goals. Some unbelievable counter-attacking goals.
“But we had 30% possession and in the second half we were hanging on. You felt there were fewer moments to hang on today and we had more of the ball. Maybe that’s because they had more respect for us as well, I don’t know. But I would like to think we have developed that side of it and today we just didn’t have enough to get those counter-attacks that we have.
“It was a big blow during the week [against RB Leipzig], so the way they recovered, the way they worked, how ready for the game, I was very pleased with it. An exceptional attitude.
“Of course, we had some moments where we had to defend, especially second-half, there were times they pegged us back. But we stuck at it, defended really well.
“So attitude-wise, mental recovery, they’ve done brilliant. Happy with a clean sheet but in games like this when you have some margins you win or if they go against you, you lose, so a draw is a fair result.
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“I think on the pitch the intensity was there, I don’t know the stats but with fans and the passion they give, the atmosphere is not there. There were a few tackles but not as many as you expect.”